Russian President Vladimir Putin was mocked on social media after footage emerged of him waiting for foreign leaders at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, this week.
Four separate photos from the summit shared on Twitter by BBC journalist Andrey Zakharaov, show the Russian leader standing in front of a Russian flag as he waits for the leaders of Turkey, Azerbaijan, India and Kyrgyzstan to arrive and meet with him.
“The person who was deliberately late for meetings now shows up earlier. Something happened?” Zakharaov asked, according to a translation of his tweet written in Russian.
Meanwhile, CNN journalist Bianna Golodryga retweeted Zakharaov and wrote: “What a montage.”
“Putin, who has a history of power trips in the form of making foreign leaders wait for him (including Obama)…gets a taste of his own medicine. From the leaders of Turkey, Azerbaijan, India and Kyrgyzstan,” she added.
Putin has been known to keep other foreign leaders waiting. The Russian president showed up an hour late to his meeting with Pope Francis in the Vatican in 2019. A year earlier, he made former President Donald Trump wait for 45 minutes ahead of a scheduled summit in Helsinki.
In July, a video of Putin waiting for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during a visit to Iran went viral. The incident came after Putin was late to a 2020 meeting with Erdoğan in Moscow, leading the Turkish president to take a seat while he waited.
Responding to a video of Putin waiting for Erdoğan at the SCO summit, Anton Gerashchenko, an adviser to Ukraine’s minister of internal affairs, wrote: “Putin used to make everyone wait, now he is the one waiting awkwardly. Times changed.”
Tweeting out a photo of Putin waiting for the president of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, at the summit, Shaun Walker, a journalist with The Guardian, wrote: “Awkwardly pretending to check your phone because your date’s late. But you don’t have a phone and your date’s Aliyev.”
During Putin’s meeting with India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Uzbekistan, the Indian leader avoided pleasantries and hugging the Russian president. Modi, however, raised his concerns about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“Today’s era is not one of war, and I’ve talked to you about this on the phone several times…in the coming days, how we move towards the path of peace—we will definitely have an opportunity to discuss this,” Modi said, according to a translation from Brookings Institute senior fellow and The India Project Director, Tanvi Madan.
Putin told Modi he knows about his concerns regarding the Ukraine war, adding that the concerns are shared by Russia and that “we want all of this to end as soon as possible.